Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Saturday, June 15, 2024 — Houston, TX

Arts and Entertainment



A&E 3/28/23 9:57pm

Review: ‘John Wick: Chapter 4’ takes the franchise to new heights

Everyone’s favorite globe-trotting, gun-toting grim reaper John Wick returned to theaters this past weekend, marking the fourth entry in director Chad Stahelski’s action saga. This newest entry follows an exhausted Wick as he attempts to finally escape the High Table, an underground crime ring that John has been fighting since the death of his wife. This premise is a far cry from the straightforward revenge narrative that defined the first film in the franchise, as each new entry in the series has managed to up the ante and expand the universe’s mythology. This inertia is continued into “Chapter 4,” as the stakes are raised to new heights, the action is more intricate than ever and the coterie of assassins surrounding the titular character is more memorable than in previous films. Despite this expansion in mythos, scope and runtime, “Chapter 4” also manages to recapture some of the emotional center that the series has drifted away from since its first, creating a surprisingly satisfying tale of revenge and reflection on the lengths we may go to achieve it. The result is an unsubtle, unconstrained and untouchable romp that pushes the limits of the action genre as a whole.


A&E 3/28/23 9:56pm

Review: Lana Del Rey is directionless with new album

The appeal of Lana Del Rey has always been the softness of her tragedy. The depressed feminine found the perfect host in Del Rey’s sultry and beautifully exhausted voice, but it’s debatable whether the uniqueness of her delivery can always compensate for the lack of what she’s delivering. The album “Did you know that there’s a tunnel under Ocean Blvd” feels like what was once Lana Del Rey’s signature sound saturated to the point of caricature. All the trademark references to god, unkind men and cigarettes are trotted out dispassionately, making the album feel more like playing Lana Del Rey bingo than a meaningful musical experience. 


A&E 3/28/23 9:55pm

Review: Yves Tumor shows the beauty in contradictions with new album

“Praise A Lord Who Chews But Which Does Not Consume; (Or Simply, Hot Between Worlds),” is Yves Tumor’s most agitated album to date. Released on March 17, “Praise A Lord'' offers a flood of dirty chords and characteristically brilliant lyrics. “Lovely sewer, tragedy free / In love with the frenzy,” Tumor writes at the album’s outset. Their elusive image and haunting, glamor-punk style create an air of enigmatic mysticality that leaves their creations up for interpretation. Both devoid of soul and absolutely overflowing with it, “Praise A Lord” is Yves Tumor’s ineffable masterpiece.


A&E 3/28/23 9:53pm

New ‘Incense’ zine aims for incendiary launch

Zines are small, independently-published works produced in either digital or physical form, and they often stress a collaborative process that brings writers, editors and readers together to work on pieces for the publication. “Incense” is Rice’s newest zine, joining the ranks of campus publications spotlighting creative works, including writing and art. According to the zine’s co-organizers, its name is meant to evoke incense’s multiple meanings: the aromatic and culturally important material and something reactionary or incendiary.


A&E 3/22/23 5:14pm

Review: 'READY TO BE' captures TWICE's upbeat energy

 On “READY TO BE,” TWICE returns with a record-breaking set of infectious and danceable tracks sure to delight their fans. TWICE is one of the K-pop groups that has had substantial crossover success in the United States, selling out arenas across the country last year. TWICE features nine members: Nayeon, Jeongyeon, Momo, Sana, Jihyo, Mina, Dahyun, Chaeyoung and Tzuyu, all of whom shine throughout the album’s bouncy and energetic production.



A&E 3/21/23 10:18pm

Review: ‘UGLY’ is a post-punk rebirth

When I put on Slowthai’s newest project on a cozy Friday morning, I was not expecting to be met with a propulsive, anxious and fervidly aggressive electro-industrial track. Slowthai’s last album “Tyron” was a departure from the UK rapper’s grime and punk roots, alternating between boastful trap anthems and R&B-influenced introspection. With “UGLY,” the Northampton-born rapper has reinvented himself once again. 


A&E 3/21/23 10:16pm

Five of Houston’s indie theatre productions to watch

Tired of scrolling through Netflix for new shows to watch? Impatient for more theatre productions on campus? For your viewing pleasure, the Thresher has compiled five up-and-coming indie theatre shows produced by local venues, and all are likely to be hard acts to follow.


A&E 3/21/23 10:15pm

.SWOOSH: Nike bets on the Metaverse

Fashion has been making a comeback in the metaverse. Virtual characters can now don North Face puffers and Off-White hoodies in Snapchat Bitmojis, Jordans in the “NBA 2K” video game series and Fortnite unicorn back bling. There have long been ways to express yourself in online worlds (think skins in video games), but only recently with the emergence of blockchain technology have big fashion companies started to explore that space as well. One brand investing heavily in the metaverse market is Nike, and they recently hosted a community event at Houston’s The Better Generation sneaker shop showcasing .SWOOSH, Nike’s virtual creations division.


A&E 3/21/23 10:14pm

Rice’s newest statue founds a ‘Blank Slate’ for conversation

​​There’s a new statue on campus, and it’s intentionally provocative. This is the first time that “A Blank Slate: Hope for a New America,” an interactive sculpture on a national tour, is being exhibited on a university campus.  The monument, created by Ghanaian artist Kwame Akoto-Bamfo to disrupt Confederate and segregated spaces, was first unveiled in Ghana in 2019 and has since been exhibited in numerous American cities, including Chicago, New York and Washington D.C. Rice University is its penultimate stop before Galveston, where it will be for Juneteenth. The monument was unveiled on March 4 and is currently located in front of the Provisional Campus Facilities tents on College Way. The exhibit has been sponsored by Rice’s Center for African and African American Studies, the School of Social Sciences, the School of Humanities and Hanszen College.


A&E 3/21/23 10:11pm

The environment meets multimedia theatrical performances in EcoStudio

Inside the Shepherd School’s Wortham Theater, environmental issues are regularly brought to life in the form of multimedia works. Wortham Theater is the stage for ENST 422: EcoStudio, a space transformed into a multimedia classroom by Kurt D. Stallmann, Director of the Rice Electroacoustic Music Labs. Stallmann and his co-instructor Joseph A. Campana, Rice English professor and poet, spent months discussing how to get students to collaborate and engage with environmental issues. The idea for the course was born from these discussions.


A&E 3/7/23 10:47pm

Review: ‘Good Riddance’ cements Abrams’ sad girl persona

Gracie Abrams’ title of bedroom pop princess isn’t up for grabs. After breaking out with “minor” and “This Is What It Feels Like,” Abrams settles into a comfortable tonal register in “Good Riddance.” Her debut studio album is her second project with producer and co-writer Aaron Dessner. Throughout the 12 tracks, the pair holds onto Abrams’ one-note sad girl persona in delicate string riffs and quiet confessions. “Good Riddance” succeeds most when Gracie gives us something to cry to. 


A&E 3/7/23 10:43pm

Predicting the 2023 Academy Awards

It’s the most wonderful time of the year: Oscar season. The 95th Academy Awards will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel for the third time and broadcasted on ABC on Sunday, March 12 at 7 p.m. CST. This was a year of fantastic blockbusters, indie word-of-mouth hits and passion projects from Hollywood legends. Without further ado, here’s what you can expect from this year’s Academy Awards. 


A&E 3/7/23 10:36pm

ThresHER’s Most Influential: A guide to women-created art

Spring break is within reach, and what better way to spend a week off during Women’s History Month than by consuming women-created media? To guide you in your period of cultural enlightenment, the Thresher compiled some of the most influential artists and creators across music, fashion and literature who identify as women. Since we’re nothing if not thorough, listen to our playlist of women artists as you check it out. 


A&E 3/7/23 10:34pm

Trailblazing directors to watch out for

While the male-dominated structures of film industries around the world have worked against women becoming successful, female directors throughout history have created some of the greatest films in history despite the barriers they experienced. Today, the number of women-identifying filmmakers helming acclaimed films have grown thanks to growing support for, and acceptance of, women behind the camera. In that spirit, here is a list of trailblazing women-identifying directors to watch.


A&E 3/7/23 10:32pm

Snap a pic with these female photographers in HTX

Are you a senior looking for graduation photos to commemorate your last few months at Rice, in need of a LinkedIn headshot to replace that old high school photo or just want some Instagram-worthy golden hour pictures? These six photographers in the Houston area who identify as women are sure to have you covered this Women’s History Month.




A&E 2/28/23 11:18pm

Senior Spotlight: Multi-hyphenate Daniel Cho composes life after Rice

From music composition to multivariable calculus, one prolific artist has excelled at it all. Daniel Cho, a double major in violin performance and composition at the Shepherd School of Music, began playing the violin around the age of five and won a competition for his first original composition at the age of nine. In addition to his impressive portfolio, Cho is minoring in business and is set to intern in Los Angeles this summer at Crowe, a global accounting firm, before returning to Rice to earn his Masters in Accounting. He hopes that his experience in finance will be another string on his bow to position himself in Los Angeles long term, where he can begin composing music for film soundtracks.